Genetic Testing and Your Dental Health

Can you be one step ahead with genetic testing?

In the past decade, there has been resurgence in the dependability of doctors on genetics and genetic testing. Our DNA holds precious information and clues that set the tone for the way our body will grow and develop in future. Genetic testing can help analyze your genes to foretell the possible health problems you may face in future.

Although it isn’t a full-fledged system yet, the use of genetic testing to tackle future diseases and medical conditions is a thing of the near future. A cheek swab or saliva sample, as of today, provides limited information.

Certain diseases such as cancer can be passed on genetically, so there is a possibility to detect it with genetic testing. But when it comes to dental problems such as cavities or gum diseases, genetic testing is not a fully reliable source.

Let’s look at this further.

Limitations of genetic testing in the world of dental problems

At this point in time, genetic testing cannot be considered as a definitive remedy to predict and tackle periodontal diseases. The main reason being, dental problems could occur as a result of various other problems apart from genetic transfer.

Some of the other factors are:

  • Environmental factors: The quality of water and food that is available in your area greatly affects your oral hygiene


  • Lifestyle: Your lifestyle is one the top reasons for susceptibility towards teeth and gum diseases. Eating bad food, irregularities in brushing and flossing, consumption of alcohol, smoking, drinking coffee excessively and eating too much chocolate or sugar – These are lifestyle choices that will come to “bite” you back!

Hence, with other factors involved, genetic testing on a child to predict dental conditions cannot predict the lifestyle and environmental factors of the child’s life.

It is also said that you are more at risk from environmental and lifestyle factors than genetic factors. So DNA markers aside, your best option is to give priority and importance to oral hygiene.

What you can do instead

Since genetic testing is not completely reliable, there are many other ways to keep check on, tackle, avoid, or defeat dental diseases. Here are many ways to keep your dental hygiene on track:

  • Use of other tools and machines:

Genetic testing could predict the future, but x-ray machines and probing measurements are the best machines to understand the current situation of your oral health. And the current scenario is a good indicator of what may lie ahead in the future. Your dentist can guide you and warn in case of any irregularities in your teeth.


  • Oral hygiene to a T:

The best way to build endurance towards teeth and gum diseases is to follow a good oral hygiene routine.

  1. Brush your teeth twice a day for not more than two minutes and use fluoride toothpaste which has been approved with the ADA Seal of Acceptance.
  2. Flossing and cleaning between your teeth helps you avoid build-up of germs and plaque that could lead to cavities and infection.
  3. Eat healthy food that don’t stain or affect your teeth. Drink beverages that don’t damage your gums and ligaments.
  4. Avoid excessive drinking and smoking. Regular check-ups are important too.


If ever you want to check out a couple more fact-based articles and information, just check out this website-

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Last updated on 11 April, 2018.

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